The National Football League (NFL) is the most popular sport in the U.S and by extension; it also attracts the most betting activity. Betting on the NFL is also becoming more and more popular with sports enthusiasts in many other countries around the world.
With so many online sports betting guides and NFL Sportsbooks to choose from, we aim to make things easy by sharing with you our choice of the best online NFL betting sites, and provide you with a simple and interesting guide to all things related to NFL betting.
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So, whether you want basic NFL betting tips and advice, a guide to the different types of bets available, or a list of recommended bookmakers where you can place good value bets on your favorite NFL team - you will find it all right here.
For further information, you can visit out NFL Odds page; and once you are ready to proceed with your sports wagering, our NFL free picks page will make essential reading.
Where to bet on the NFL online
Below we have listed some of the best NFL online betting sites, ranked in order, with information about any sign-up bonuses they may be offering. You can check out each site's review by clicking on the review button on the side.
Bovada.lv: Bovada is one of the leading online Sportsbooks for NFL betting. Join today, make your first deposit and receive a 50% welcome bonus worth up to $250. Read more about Bovada.
Betonline.ag: A great choice for betting on a range of sports including the NFL. Currently offering a 25% bonus of up to $1000 for new members. Read more about Betonline.ag.
Sportsbetting.ag: Another big player in the NFL betting field, Sportsbetting are offering a 25% bonus of up to $1000 when you sign up today. Read more about Sportsbetting.ag.
5dimes.eu: For a great selection of daily wagers and a reputation for great customer service, open your 5dimes account today. Read more about 5dimes.eu.
Bookmaker.eu: Join Bookmaker today for a huge choice of wagering options, including live in-play betting, and receive a 50% welcome bonus on your first deposit. Read more about Bookmaker.eu.
NFL betting lines and odds explained
If you are new to NFL betting and have just opened your first Sportsbook account, you may find betting lines a little confusing at first. They are presented in a way that assumes you have a basic understanding of how they work, but for many novice gamblers, this is not the case. However, you should not be put off by these seemingly unfathomable numbers, NFL betting lines are actually very easy to read.
You may think that betting on the NFL is a simple as picking the outright winner of a game but betting lines go slightly deeper than that. An NFL betting line typically has three sections (as seen in the screen shot from Bovada.lv below):
The three sections on the line represent the following bets:
- Point Spread
So, let’s look at each wager option in closer detail.
NFL Point spread
A Point Spread bet is the most popular way of wagering on NFL games. It essentially balances the odds by giving an advantage (in the form of points) to the underdog, and a handicap to the favorite.
Example:Point spread New York Giants (underdog):
- +3.5 (-105)
In this example, the Colts are favorites and the bookmaker has calculated that a three and a half point handicap should make the game even. The number in brackets (-115) represent the odds of the Colts winning once the handicap has been applied.
So how does the bet work? Well it is quite simple; if you back the Colts, they have a -3.5 handicap and must therefore win by 4 points or more for the bet to be successful. If you back the Giants, they have a +3.5 point advantage, so even if they lose by up to three points, your bet would still pay out.
The odds on the Colts are -115, which means that you would have to place $115 to win $100 profit. You do not have to bet $115, this is just the ratio that is applied to whatever amount you choose to stake. The same principle applies if you back the Giants at odds of -105.
If the Point Spread is set at 3 and the scores finish level, your original stake is refunded. This situation is known as a “push” result. To avoid push results, half points are often used in Point Spreads.
NFL Moneyline bet
The Moneyline section of a betting line is the most simple and is a good place to start your NFL betting journey. All you have to do is predict the winner of a game and the odds reflect the probability of that happening.
- Moneyline Colts: -175
- Moneyline Giants: +155
In this example, the Colts have been priced at -175 by the online bookmaker. This means that you would have to bet $175 to win a profit of $100. If you win, you always get your original stake back, so you would receive a total of $275 back.
If you decide to back the Giants, a $100 bet would earn you a profit of $155, so you would receive a total of $255 back. Remember, the Moneyline only sets the odds and does not reflect how much money you are required to bet.
NFL Totals bet
The third section of a typical betting line is the Totals Wager. This is another simple bet that requires you to predict if a game will finish with over or under a certain amount of total points, once the scores of both teams have been combined.
- Total Over 51: -110
- Total Under 51: -110
If you back Over 51 and the combined score of both teams is more than 51, you will win $100 for every $110 dollars staked. If you place a wager on Under 51 points and the combined score of both teams is less than 51, you will win $100 for every $110 dollars staked. If the score is exactly 51, it wold be a push result and your stake would be returned.
Time to choose your bookmaker
At this stage, it might be worth exploring our NFL betting site directory for a list of the best places to start your sport wagering. Remember, our aim is to ensure that you have the best gambling experience possible.
It is worth noting that the most successful gamblers will open many accounts with all the top bookmakers to ensure that they always get the best price on their predictions.
NFL betting Tips
Okay, so now you understand the basics, can read an NFL betting line and have opened an account at one of our recommended sites, you may want to start betting. But before you do, it is important to do some basic research in order to improve your chances of success. You do not have to be a mathematical wizard to be a successful gambler but you should at least take the time to check some basic data before you place any bet.
Watch as many games as possible
You should begin your NFL betting research by watching as many games as possible in order to learn the strengths and weaknesses of the competing teams. NFL games are now broadcast all over the world, so wherever you live, it should not be too hard to find games to watch. By watching games, you will start to build a picture of the dominant teams, the star players and the influential Coaches within the game.
Keep it simple to begin with
Once you feel that you have a decent understanding of the game, you can start making your first predictions. A good place to start is with Moneyline bets where you just pick the outright winner of the game. Placing a few Moneyline bets will help you to get comfortable with reading the odds and identifying the strongest teams.
Think about the long term
It is worth pointing out, that gambling is not all about winning huge amounts of money with every wager. It is about winning more than you bet over a long-term period of time and generating a respectable long-term yield. To achieve this, you need to find bets that have a good chance of winning at a price that represents good value.
Develop the winning habit
You may find that your winning bets do not provide you with a huge return to begin with, but as long as you are picking a few winners and finding the best value on each bet, then you are on the right track. You might want to open accounts with several bookmakers in order to find the best odds for each bet. You can also use free bet offers to fund some of your first wagers.
Read the small print
When you do place a bet, make sure that you understand the terms of the wager with your chosen bookmaker. For example, what happens if the game is drawn? Most betting companies will refund your stake, but it is always worth checking before you part with your money.
Start looking at the stats
After you a have placed a few Moneyline bets, you might want to move onto to the Points Spread market. This is by far the most popular way of betting on NFL games and offers a way for novices to assess a team’s chances at a glance. The Point Spread applied by the bookmaker is designed to create an even playing field where both selections have an equal chance of winning, and it is up to you to decide which way the result will swing.
To make a decision, you may want to take several factors into consideration including recent form, injuries and historical match results between the two sides. At this point you may find yourself taking your first important steps into the world of data and statistics.
Once you have placed Moneyline and Point Spread bets, you can use your experience to enter the Totals betting market. This is another area where statistics can used to improve your chances of making an accurate prediction.
NFL Betting Strategies
After a relatively short learning curve, you should now be ready to progress to the next level of NFL betting. You may already be developing your own ideas and strategies, and that is important because different bettors excel in different areas. You may find that you favour one type of bet or enjoy researching one particular area of statistics. The most important thing is to concentrate on what works for you.
Beyond the basic betting line, there are plenty of gambling opportunities to explore such as Parlays, Teasers and live in-play betting. With some bets, you don’t even need to pick a winner, you just need to make the right statistical call on a particular proposition.
Keep a betting log
The sooner you start keeping a betting log, the better. There is no better way of tweaking your strategy than analysing your own wins and losses to identify where you are going right or wrong. Over the course of time, your betting log will start to reveal patterns and you can apply a points ranking system to teams or players according to their performance in your wagers. By building your own database of statistics, you can compare your predictions with those of the bookmakers to spot high value betting opportunities.
Learn to love the stats
The more you understand statistics, the better chance you will have of gaining an edge on the bookmakers. The NFL provides plenty of areas where stats can be used to compare the offensive and defensive prowess of any team.
Some examples of statistics that you should be recording include:
- Yardage: You can quickly identify a team’s strength by looking at their average yardage gained or conceded during the different phases of play.
- Home advantage: Historical home field advantage (HFA) statistics have traditionally been used to calculate the handicap in a Point Spread. As with many sports, the home team in NFL is statistically more likely to win any game, but the percentage is not as high as in some sports such as soccer. By looking at short, medium and long term HFA statistics, you can spot high value betting opportunities for strong home performers – even if they are ranked as underdogs in the game.
- NFL key numbers: As you become more comfortable with spread betting in NFL, it becomes more important to understand the significance of Key numbers. These numbers are the most common scoring margins, and are used to set the benchmark for point spreads by bookmakers. The most important key numbers are 3 and 7, as these are the two most common winning margins in the history of the NFL, accounting for nearly 20% of all results. Of those two key numbers, 3 is the most common winning margin (11.8%) due to the amount of games that are decided by a single field goal. The second most common margin is 7, this makes sense because it equates to the value of a converted touchdown. Knowing the key numbers can help you to avoid bad value bets.
Our betting guides are designed to enhance your overall betting experience, and our directory of top betting sites will help you to find the very best value for all your sports wagering needs,.